Castel / Castle of North East Scotland



North East Scotland

Last updated 22nd May, 2002

This web page has been set up to explain the database's relating to Castel / Castle found on World Connect at (see links below). The research into Castel (and all the variations of "Cast*") began as an attempt to link my line into the main line in Fyvie. It ended up as a One Name Study of Castel in the North East of Scotland.

It has also been used to experiment with HTML programming.

Origins of Name
"Castel" appears to have originated in several countries. I am of the opinion that when surnames came into fashion, it was taken by people working or living near a Castle. Marcus Castell has an explanation on his website regarding a family in London.

By the mid nineteenth century, the use of the spelling "Cast*" in Scotland appears to have been mainly confined to the North East. Elsewhere, they used "Cass*", although in the eighteenth century some families outwith the NE were using the "t" spelling. The spelling changes frequently, even within the same family.

The earliest entry in Aberdeenshire is in 1454, when a John Castell was listed as a witness in the records of Aberdeen Town Council. A Castell family was still there up to 1632. After this there are isolated entries on the IGI. However, by the time of the 1696 Poll Tax there does not appear to have been any Castel family in Aberdeen. Reviewing the Tax records for Aberdeenshire indicates there may have been as few as three family groups, with another in Banffshire. There seems to be no trace of the group around Deer, but the Cruden & Fyvie lines continued.

I have used a cut-off date of 4th April, 1881 (the Census) for my research, although I have added children after this date where I have come across the information. I have also concentrated on the Castel line, so families outwith the name may (or may not) be shown.

I do not claim that my research is accurate, or that I have accessed all records. Until the 1841 Census, it cannot be provan that the family groups I have listed are correct. In many cases they could just be a convenient fit.

Note : A member of the Guild of One-Name Studies is studying the name Castle. Follow the link for details.

Naming of Children
Although not a hard and fast rule, Scots often named their children using the following convention. However, for many reasons, there were variations to this.

1st son named after father's father
2nd son named after mother's father
3rd son named after father

1st daughter named after mother's mother
2nd daughter named after father's mother
3rd daughter named after mother

Parish of Fyvie

Link :
This database contains the main Castel family lines. Using Poll Tax records, it is believed that all Fyvie entries trace back to the same individual. However, this cannot be provan. There are 5 lines linked to the central family, 4 of which use circumstantial evidence to suggest the link, the fifth is merely linked so that all entries are listed under "Unknown Castell". There are notes where the links are made explaining my thinking. Although this file is headed Fyvie, family members appear to have spread out into several other Parishes in Aberdeenshire and beyond.

Map of Fyvie & surrounding area

Parish of Cruden

Link :
This database is disjointed, as I am unable to link all entries together (even on a best fit basis). The family does not appear to have strayed far from Cruden, as I have found no trace of them elsewhere in Aberdeenshire. I do know that some went to Canada.

Map of Cruden Bay & surrounding area


Link :
This database records all the entries relating to Banffshire. Like Cruden, it is disjointed, as I cannot link all entries. There is also a crossover between the "Cast*" and "Cass*" spelling. The main family line appears to have been centered on Keith. I have included some Aberdeenshire entries as their family groups appear to have originated in Banffshire.

Miscellaneous Aberdeenshire

Link :
This database contains the miscellaneous entries relating to Aberdeenshire not recorded elswhere. Like Cruden & Banffshire, it is disjointed as I cannot link the entries. There is a large family group headed by "Unknown Castell" based on Old Deer. Although not all the links cannot be provan, the 1696 Poll Tax records and Episcopal Church records would indicate they are connected.

At some point in the future, I will produce a list of all entries I have found in the International Genealogical Index and the Statutory Indexes that I have not recorded elsewhere.

Useful Links

Aberdeen & North East Family History Society
Parish Map of Aberdeenshire, Scotland
Scottish Genealogical Information
Scots Origins



Note. Apart from Aberdeen, all the clocks are based on Greenwich Mean Time, and do not take "Daylight Saving" into account.


The Java Applets for the Clock and Quotes were written by Paul Lutus. Among other things, he is also responsible for Are You Overweight

Contact the author Brian M Clark

A more recent e-mail address is brian(at)(nospam)
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